Eric Blackwell who is the Director of Technology for RE/MAX Properties East in Louisville, Kentucky, spoke with me yesterday from British Columbia where he is speaking at the Real Estate Web Masters Conference to other real estate professionals about SEO.
Listen to our interview about SEO:
J: Eric, what’s the main message that you want to get across to other real estate professionals about SEO (search engine optimization)?
E: I think there is some mystery attached to the term SEO but what it really is creating a website that Google and other search engines would want it to be. It’s a lot of hard work to build a site that has both the reputation and authority that search engines are looking for. A lot of times people think you need to trick the search engines but that’s not necessarily true.
J: Have you found that there common threads between leads and traffic that come from HomeGain, and Pay per Click, and natural search engine traffic?
E: The common thread is that there are best practices that work to effectively “convert” them to clients and then to lifetime customers. Whether you get the lead from HomeGain or other source, the lead has to come into your site and you need to be able to get them to contact you or to be able to contact them – and be able to convert those clients. The more effective you are at that, the better off you’ll be and the more profitable things will be for you.
J: What are some common traps that Realtors might fall into when trying to do SEO marketing?
E: The biggest trap agents may fall into is “SEO tunnel vision”, where they only think about SEO and don’t think how it’s going to affect the user experience on their site and conversion rate. They think they are “marketing” but they are actually just in the echo chamber. The goal is to sell real estate. Yes, SEO can be a big piece of it, so can other ways of picking up leads and traffic to your site. Agents should look at it as a holistic thing, that there is a cost to it and a benefit to it. You always have to think about what you’re giving and what you’re getting. Consider how you would diversify a stock portfolio – you can do the exact same thing with how you create your website, how you get traffic and how you convert leads.
J: Any last words of advice?
E: As we wrap up this conference, and after hearing what agents are saying, it’s important that Realtors don’t give up their SEO and other marketing efforts and keep bringing new clients in. Now is the time to keep investing your time and money.
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